New Delhi, Oct 11: A great sigh of relief for hostages of the hijacked ship, MT Stolt Valor as they were freed from the armed Somalian pirates unharmed. The three Indians and 26 other members of the crew were kept in captivity for more than one and half months. "The vessel has been released from Somali pirates and all crew are safe and healthy," Directorate General of Shipping said in a release. The Indian crew released are Jeeva Kiran D'Souza of Kasargod in Kerala, Akbar Ali Rafeeque Juwale of Ratnagiri in Maharashtra and Anthony Clive Themudo of Goa. The ship MV Iran Deyanat, carrying 40,000 tonnes of iron ore en-route from China to Netherlands, was hijacked on the Red Sea by Somali pirates on Friday, Aug 22.
Besides Indians, the ship had Iranians and Croatians. India had sought the assistance of the Maritime Rescue Coordination Centre in the matter. It was not immediately clear if any ransom has been paid for the release of the crew members and the ship.
The merchant vessel was headed from China to the Netherlands carrying minerals and industrial products when it was hijacked on August 21 along with a German and a Japanese ship off the Gulf of Aden.